In today's troubled times, we are constantly seeking answers, attempting to make the right choices and struggling to take decisions. The Ishaavaasya Upanishad which revolves around Gyaan aur Karma, knowledge and action contains the wisdom of ancient Indian sages passed down over generations. The teachings attain greater significance in our era, as the world we live in is increasingly becoming more materialistic, and the veils of ignorance clouding man's mind have only grown thicker and darker.
But anyone who has tried reading and deciphering the Upanishads will know that it is no mean task. To the average person, the teachings seem complex, even irrelevant today. This is where a great teacher could make all the difference. Renowned Scholar and academician, late Pandit Vishnu Kant Shastri, was a brilliant teacher who effortlessly imparts the timeless wisdom contained in the Ishaavaasya Upanishad. His simple explanations, peppered with Shlokas, Dohas, interesting Stories and relevant examples, make for a great learning experience not just for the students of Vedanta but also for students of the world's greatest mystery-life.
Translated eloquently into English h by his granddaughter Vibha Batra, this book makes the ancient wisdom of the Upanishads accessible to the readers of today. It will satisfy their inner yearning to understand the complex world around them, and help them attain their final goal of eternal truth and peace.
Pandit Vishnu Kant Shastri, a man who donned several roles, was an academician, scholar, poet, philosopher, author, critic, orator, editor, administrator and politician. Born in 1929, he chose to become a lecturer in Hindi and, after forty-one years, retired as Acharya of the Hindi department of the University of Calcutta in 1994, marking the end of an illustrious academic career. He also served as a member of the West Bengal Legislative Assembly in 1977 and went on to become a member of the Rajya Sabha in 1992. He was assigned gubernatorial duties of Himachal Pradesh in 1999, and a year later, was sworn in as the governor of Uttar Pradesh.
He won several accolades and laurels for his literary efforts, chief among them being the Acharya Ramchandra Shukla Puruskar by the U.P. government for his book Kuch Chandan Ki Kuch Kapur Ki in 1972- 73 and the U.P. government's state Literary Award for his book Bangla Desh Ke Sandarbh Mein in 1974-75. He also wrote essays and discourses on the Bhagavad Gita and Ramcharit Maanas. He passed away in 2005.
Vibha Batra has done her Masters in Communication and is currently working as a copywriter at a leading advertising agency. She is based in Chennai.
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